“Boredom is the illness of the modern age,” I once heard.
With summertime nearing, many parents already can hear this phrase coming from their children’s mouths: “I’m bored!”
But it’s not just kids. Look around you, and you’ll see that many grown-ups seem bored too. People often try to cure boredom through a variety of means, these days primarily by consumer entertainment options and electronics.
But these media tend only to delay boredom, not cure it. Therefore, I’d like to offer three ideas for curing boredom that will leave you more fulfilled than empty hours spent on Netflix or Facebook.
- Pray and read the Word
In his new book, “How to Ruin Your Life,” LifeWay’s Eric Geiger explains the spiritual significance of boredom. “When we are bored, we are not looking at Christ because He is never boring and always quenches and satisfies,” Geiger said. “And when we are not looking at Him, we are looking at something else that can pull us to our own demise.”
Geiger goes so far to say that many major sins, such as indulging in pornography, were preceded by moments of mere boredom. The next time you feel bored, pull out a copy of the Scripture and spend a few moments in prayer and in the Word of God.
“Action is the antidote to despair,” a wise sage once said. If you are feeling bored, go do something. Take a long walk or go run a mile. Or drop and do 20 push-ups and 10 sit-ups. You might be surprised at how undergoing physical activity can cure boredom and remind you that you’re alive. Then, you can even turn this into a daily practice.
The Bible says that Jesus came “not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom” (Mark 10:45). Whether at work or home, there’s always something more you could do. The next time you have spare time, look around and see how you can help another person at work or home. By not wasting little moments, you may feel less bored—and more importantly, imitate God, who created men and women to work.
In addition to these suggestions, there are others. You could read a novel on “dead tree,” do some yardwork, call a family member just to talk or more. Every day from God is a gift. So the next time you or your kids say, “I’m bored,” know that’s your cure to redeem the times with something positive, instead of something destructive. Who knows? Your thoughts might go from “I’m bored” to “I’m blessed.”